Published On: Fri, Oct 17th, 2014

Sixteenth traffic victim – Parliament questions Government (warning disturbing image)

TrafficWILLEMSTAD - Curaçao Chronicle usually doesn’t report on accidents, but it is getting to a point where we have to warn our readers about the traffic here on the island. Last night, on the road at Wacawa (western side of the island), a woman was killed in a traffic accident. A pickup flew off the road and came against the guardrail end. The woman was thrown from the car by the blast. The driver of the pickup was found to be under the influence of alcohol and was arrested.

The victim is the 16th death in traffic this year. 16 in one year, and the year isn’t even over yet, is too much for a small island like ours.

The main reason for these accidents is speeding. It is incredible to see how fast people drive on this island. There are many traffic lights and side roads on the island, so speeding becomes extremely dangerous.

Another cause for all these accidents is the use of alcohol. We don’t have to say much about this because it is self-explanatory.

During the budget debate in Parliament, MPs Cijntje (PS), Jesus-Leito (PAR) and Moses (PAIS) presented a bill proposal, as a motion, to help save lives in traffic.

The three MPs indicate in the document that it has been 9 months now since the government has informed Parliament on their efforts to make traffic on the island safer. The MPs even suggest a meeting with the Council of Ministers to work out a cooperation between the two entities on this serious issue.

Parliament proposes a “Curaçao Traffic Authority” to work on the road infrastructure, safety, behavior in traffic, vehicle safety and care after accident.

Parliament wants the Government to use the Safe System approach (SSA). The SSA aims for a more forgiving road system that takes human fallibility and vulnerability into account. Under a Safe System the Government designs the whole transport system to protect people from death and serious injury.

The three MPs also indicated in their document that under the Safe System approach, all system designers must share the responsibility for road safety outcomes. System designers include planners, engineers, parents, policy makers, enforcement officers, educators, utility providers, insurers, vehicle manufacturers and importers, the media, fleet managers and many more.

This document will be presented to Parliament for treatment and hopefully it will pass as a motion during the budget discussions.

Meanwhile, please be careful on the road.

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